blogging is important to me as a means of writing down what God is teaching me in His Word, chronicling the life experiences that demonstrate His truth, and to challenge myself first and others secondly, to "tolle lege," take up and read His Word. Getting away from any one of those things undermines my point for blogging.
So in light of the Virginia Tech tragedy, while there were a dozen things I wanted to write, I couldn't buy enough vowels to get them on screen. However, some excellent posts have been written about the tragedy and how Christians should boldly respond, and I heartily encourage you to visit them.
Rabbit at The Hutch in There, But By the Grace of God Go All of Us.
Carla at Reflections of the Times in Blacksburg, Virginia: A City in Pain.
Jules at Everyday Mommy in Again?
Since then, my thoughts in formulation on this sorrow are the sobering realization of what it means in this dark world when God so chooses to not restrain evil. The effects are shattering because evil is shattering, revealing the truth of an evil that seeks to destroy and devour. However, I find the question not to be so much, "Where was God in this?" but "Christian, where are you in this?"
This week my study was on Romans 13:8-14. This passage is about first, to love your neighbor as yourself; second, understand the present times to be alert and prepared for Christ's return; and third, be clothed with Christ and live decently in His righteousness. A believer's understanding of these present times is a framework to motivate one in the first exhortation of loving as well as in the third command to live clothed with Christ.
Look at what verse 11 says, "And do this, understanding the present time. The hour has come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed." The instruction of "do this" was for the preceding verses of loving our neighbors as ourselves. "Do not murder" is one of the specific examples--amazing, huh?
It is the conviction of understanding this present time, that strikes at my heart and should strike at every believer's heart certainly because of what has just happened. More so though, because Paul seems to assume a believer's slumber and therefore, the need to wake up and do something about this present time.
Is this not what Virginia Tech tells us? Not what should the university have done in alerting the students, not what Congress should do in regards to gun control laws, and not even how the gunman should have received previous mental health intervention. Those questions will be asked, investigated, debated, special forumed, talk-showed and eventually legislated.
But, Christians, do we really want to ask the hard questions? Do we really want to be confronted with our part in this tragedy? For the slumbering Christians we've become, here's deserved contemplation.
Where were you to tell the gospel without shame, apology or backpedaling? Man is utterly depraved (Rom 3:10-18) and must have a Savior or will be judged eternally to death and hell. (Jn 3:18, 2 Thess 1:8-9) The only Savior is the Lord Jesus Christ. (Isa 43:11) There is only one way to Christ. (Jn 14:6) Salvation comes by grace alone through faith alone in Christ Jesus alone. (Rom3:21-25) Period.
Where were you to stand by the principles of God's absolute truth without giving into academic, relativistic, humanistic, postmodern or philosophical deconstruction? 2 Cor 10:5, "We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ."
Where were you to teach the children of this generation that God's Word is inerrant, infallible and inspired? 2 Tim 3:16, "All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction and for training in righteousness.."
Where were you to confront not this gunman's mere emotional needs but his looming spiritual needs? Rom 7:24, "Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?"
We were slumbering--comfortably asleep in selfish, slothful, worldly pursuits. Content to pajama party with all manner of sensitivity towards one another's feelings and personal experiences, kindly afraid to confront error and falsity. Happy as larks to show our good works of compassion that prepares a table promising a feast but in truth, starves the soul. How long will we continue to slumber? Those are hard questions.
The only solution is and always has been the Lord Jesus Christ. May God Himself comfort the families. May this confrontation of evil result in the saving of souls and the exaltation of Christ. May Christians wake up to where we have failed because we chose to slumber. May God have mercy on us!